Squinting through the sunlight.
Mazzy Star and quiet smiles bring me back.
Head to head sharing headphones
Hidden in the corner of Meave’s loft bed.
Little Plastic Castle
and the meaning my heart longed to echo.
The smell of Nair. And burning.
Playing with fire.
And burning ashes.
My initiation into witchcraft,
staring at an orange as the lucite cross dangled from my neck.
A velvet rope held it to me—
a velvet rope that couldn’t contain me.
My period came—
Like a tidal wave while
Fiona apple’s Tidal echoed in my ears, my soul.
Dilate pushing me into who I am...
The me I kept folded behind heart shaped lockets.
Heresy and witchcraft, feminism and smudged lines.
And no lines.
Cowlicks I couldn’t control.
Everything I couldn’t control.
Blood and hair and the covering up of both.
And covering up the mixtape.
And the tears.
And the smell of burned hair and torched aerosol.
And the cigarettes I wasn’t yet ready to try.
Covering up me. But oh, so loosely.
Into the package I am finally ready to open.
Lauren Theresa is a writer, botanical sorceress, and mother of two living just outside NYC where she received her MSW from New York University. Her first book, Into the Deep: poetry from the shadows will be available in print May 2021.